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Terrorism In Goa: The Plot Thickens

By Mustafa Khan

26 October, 2009

Malgonda Patil who died in the Margao explosion was from the Sangli unit of the Sanatan Saunsthan. Sangli and Miraj had recently been scenes of communal riots over the controversy of the gory depiction of Shivaji killing Afzal Khan. The purpose of the display was obvious: provoking people on a sensitive historical divisive event and sowing seeds of hatred. In Miraj the SS had distributed literature that was starkly communal. During the riots Patil had been traveling between the headquarters of SS at Ramnathi and Miraj. By carrying out bomb attack on the eve of Diwali the calculated aim was creating communal disharmony, suspicion and hatred. The target was an age old local tradition of competition of effigies, Narakasura, which is not a canonized tradition of Hinduism. Hindutva ideology is urbanized middle class drawing room creation of a monolithic Hindu society. Patil was in touch with one of the accused in Mahrashtra bombings of last year. Vikram Vinay Bhave. The scooter was traced to the wife of a Goa, minister. Jyotil Dhavalikar was known as a sympathizer of SS and yet the police did not do much. It could also be weak motivation, or bias.

The bomb blast in Margao and the other at Sancoale surely indicate how organized the Hindu right terrorists are. They also enjoy patronage within the governmental set up and the police and even the investigating agencies. A full year after the exposure of the Sanatan Sanstha's involvement in Thane and Vashi, Mumbai, and Panvel bomb attacks the governments and the police not only did not take any action like banning the organization but let it and other such organizations of the Hindu right flourish. This is in sharp contrast with swift ban of SIMI and branding by the Maharashtra government of the whole Ahlehadesh section of Muslims as extremist involved in terrorism. The central government followed suit.

There is too much of self justification on the part of the office bearers of the SS and it surely smacks of the self justification of Himani Savarker of the notoriety of bomb for bomb strategy. Could this too much self assurance be the product of the general support they enjoy among the power that be?

The other disturbing factor is how the explosives reached there. It is plausible that the arms haul of October 10, 2009 at Bhatkal found its way to Margao through sea route. Nagaraj Somaya Devadiga, Jattayya Devadiga and Anand Manjunath Devadiga were arrested. Although 1200 kg of ammonium nitrate, 3000 electric and 500 non electric detonators recovered from them, this loose end was not tied to the subsequent blasts in Goa. Even so coastal security police officer LH Nandesh does say that the ammunition was brought by the sea. There is also misgiving that the coastal security police have accepted bribe to suppress the matter. People in Bhatkal fear that this is repeat performance of Hubli court blast where Hindu right terrorists were involved and yet the Muslim youths picked up by police are still languishing in prison.

Mustafa Khan
Malegaon, Maharashtra

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